I chose this title before I even had any idea of what to write. 2015 has been a big year. I knew I had learned so much this year (the first full year I’ve been out in LA), but I didn’t even know where to start or how to say it. Eventually, the wheels started turning and I realized it would be hard to narrow it down to just 15. I’ve learned more about myself and about this life than I have in any other year, and I’m excited to share it with you all. Here are 15 things I’ve learned in 2015.
1. “Success” means something different to everyone.
For some, it means making a lot of moolah. For others, it means traveling the world. For me, it means living a life I’m proud of.
2. Working smart is as important as working hard.
It’s a symbiotic relationship between the two. Multitasking is a great skill, but you have to be careful to never let it take away from your maximum effort.
3. Go with your gut.
I really cannot adequately describe how much my year served as a testament to this. We are all forced to make significant decisions that can affect the rest of our lives. There is only one YOU, so do what your instincts tell you. It’s your life.
4. If you don’t chase it, someone else will take it.
There are a lot of hard working people in this world. If you turn down an opportunity, procrastinate, or become complacent in any way, you bet someone else will take your place in no time. Keep it moving, and don’t ever stop or settle!
5. Comparison to others is pointless.
I’m all for a little healthy competition, but that’s different than comparison. Your life is unique to you and my life is unique to me. The person sitting next to you? Their life is unique to them. We are all where we are at because of experiences we’ve been through and decisions we’ve made. Why compare when you can simply coexist?
6. If you don’t stand for something, you will stand for nothing.
Saying no is as important as saying yes. Don’t be afraid to express your beliefs, instincts, opinions, thoughts, feelings, morals, or disagreement. People will take advantage of your passivity so don’t just sweep an issue under the rug. Make a name for yourself and speak your mind with courage.
7. There is no better feeling than hard work paying off.
When I booked Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Mexico walking for Guess/ Marciano, it felt like I was in a dream for 9 days straight. I had entered this industry with Guess in my top 3 goal clients to book. With this happening in my very first year of pursuing my modeling career, I took this as the sign that I am where I am supposed to be, doing what I am supposed to be doing.
8. There really is such a thing as too. much. wine.
November 15. Birthday. Malibu Wines. I am not invincible.
9. But there’s never such thing as too much Adele.
Chyeahhhhhh I think we all know that.
10. You don’t owe them anything.
If you pay even the slightest attention to pop culture, you heard or read Jennifer Lawrence’s testimony regarding the gender wage gap and treatment in Hollywood. J Law reminds me to not be fearful of “not being liked” or of seeming “difficult” when trying to engage in conversations regarding any matter, whether it’s personal or business-oriented. Stop being apologetic for no reason. You do not owe them anything.
11. Only people with complete confidence in their relationship can do long distance.
All of you other LDR’s out there will understand this one. “Oh my gosh, you live in different cities?? Yikes.” or “Long distance never works.” My boyfriend, Michael (feel free to call him Miguel), is a former professional soccer player (Arizona) and now works in staffing (San Diego). I am a full-time model in the competitive, but rewarding market of Los Angeles. I am proud to have a consistently confident and trustworthy relationship since day one with my guy. We are understanding of each others’ dreams and goals, and know being physically apart is only temporary but necessary to fulfill our careers.
12. It’s ok to do something because you just simply enjoy it.
My whole life I have been asked “Why are you so dressed up? Why are you wearing makeup for this?” etc. Welp…. I realized it is because I freakin’ want to be. I feel my best when I am put together, and I enjoy expressing myself through the clothes I wear, the way I do my makeup, and the color of my nails. My blog is another example of this- I enjoy writing, researching, and posting. It’s a form of self-expression that I have always loved and that is a sufficient, valid answer.
13. My mind is most creative when I’m on a budget.
While budgeting is beneficial in more ways than one, I have to say it has really helped unleash my creative juices. I am excited to share some of the juice with you all in 2016 with new projects I’ll be launching! Stay tuned.
14. The hustle is real, and some people just can’t handle it.
If they don’t understand or support your grind, don’t feel like you need to undermine it when speaking to them. I realized I was doing this for a time, and it dawned on me that it is simply not an option to discredit my dedication and hard work simply because others don’t understand or are intimidated by it. Embrace your hustle and own your drive.
15. Life is what you make it.
Commitment is the driving force “success” depends upon. You get out what you put in. Life is an evolving whirlwind of experiences, adaptations, goals, accomplishments. We wake up every morning with the choice to have a good day or a bad day- choose wisely.
Cheers to a life full of hustle, positivity, and going with your gut!